Brian Laundrie’s Remains Found at Florida Reserve

Julia Strasius, Business Manager

On Oct. 21, 2021, an examination of dental records revealed that the remains found at Florida’s Carlton Reserve were those of Brian Laundrie.

Laundrie traveled around the U.S. in a van this summer with his former girlfriend, Gabby Petito. The couple documented their journey on social media, but communication stopped towards the end of August. 

On Sept. 1, after a month of travelling, Laundrie returned home without Petito. 10 days later, her family reported her missing. Petito’s remains were later found in an area of Wyoming’s Grand Teton National Park and the Bridger-Teton National Forest on Sept. 19, with the coroner ruling that the cause of death was strangulation

On September 17, Laundrie was reported missing by his family after he left for a hike a few days earlier and did not return. This prompted a search for Laundrie, including an eight-hour search of his home.   

On Sept. 24, the FBI issued a warrant for Laundrie’s arrest after his use of “unauthorized devices.” In late August, Laundrie used a debit card and PIN number that did not belong to him. However, Laundrie remained missing until investigators later found items of his and his remains at Florida’s Carlton Reserve. 

The Laundrie family attorney, Steven Bertolino, reported that Laundrie’s parents helped guide North Port and FBI police to the Reserve, a place where Laundrie had spent a lot of his time given its close proximity to his home. Laundrie’s parents informed the authorities that they planned to visit the Reserve to search for their son. 

According to the chief medical examiner for Florida’s Twelfth District, the skeletal remains found included part of a human skull. The remains were discovered via a notebook and backpack belonging to Laundrie, as well as clothing consistent with what authorities thought he had worn. Although originally underwater, his personal items washed up when the water receded. According to investigators, the items may still be salvageable. 

FBI Denver took to Twitter to announce the news. Since the remains were confirmed as Laundrie’s, the future of Petito’s case remains unknown.